British automaker Vauxhall is entering two cars in the annual London to Brighton Veteran Car Run. One is the oldest 4-seat Vauxhall in existence and the other is one of only two vehicles to have done the event more than 60 times.
Both cars are part of the automaker’s Heritage Collection. Each car was produced during the first two years of Vauxhall production.
“The younger of the two cars, a 6HP Light Car, registered JNM 400, has entered the Run at least 64 times, according to Vauxhall’s records, making it one of only two cars in the history of the event that has left the starting line on more than 60 occasions,” the automaker said.
“But that near unrivaled record has almost been matched by its finishing medals, which total 60 to date – no mean feat, given the age, size and simplicity of the car.”
The car made its debut in the London to Brighton event in 1927, when it was driven by Percy Kidner, Vauxhall’s retired managing director. The car later went to Australia before being acquired for the Heritage Collection in 1946 and returning to England.
The 6HP has a single-cylinder, 1,029cc engine driving its rear axle through a 2-speed epicyclic gearbox and chain drive system, and is one of the last Vauxhalls produced with tiller steering.
The other antique car, “1903 5HP Light Car, registered BS 8213, is the world’s oldest surviving four-seat Vauxhall, and the 45th car built by the company,” Vauxhall notes.
“Originally delivered to a Dumbarton shipbuilder at a cost of £154 3s 3d, the 5HP was purchased for the Collection in 1995 and has been a regular entrant in the London to Brighton Run since then.”
The London to Brighton Veteran Car Run celebrates the abolition of the 1896 Act of Parliament requiring cars in Britain to be preceded by someone on foot waving a red flag, and the raising of the speed limit from 4 mph to 14. The run is scheduled for November 3 with 418 pre-1905 vehicles entered.